Before you head down to the Apple Store to snag that new iPhone, here are a few tips to make sure your upgrade goes as smoothly and quickly as possible:

1. Backup Your Phone!

Sounds simple enough, but double-check that your phone has been backing up and is current.

Go to Settings > iCloud > Backup and make sure it’s set to “On”. You can also see when the last update was or even click “Back Up Now”.

When you get your new phone, you will connect it to your iCloud account and it will then ask you if you want to restore from an iCloud backup and you will choose the latest backup (note the time you do the backup to be sure).

2. Sync Your Photos

There’s nothing worse than turning on that new phone and realizing you just lost a bunch of pictures. With iCloud Photo Library it’s almost impossible to do so let’s make sure it’s set up correctly.

Go to Settings > iCloud > Photos and make sure “iCloud Photo Library” is set to “On”. As well make sure “Optimize iPhone Storage” is checked – that way it will only store the lowest file size on your phone. If you are just turning this on, make sure you are connected to Wifi and that you have time to upload all your photos before turning on the new phone. You can check the progress of the upload/sync by going to Photos and at the bottom of your “Moments” you’ll see how many Photos and Videos you have as well as the progress of the upload.

Know that when you do get the new phone, it will take some time to pull down all the photos from the cloud, but you can always check to make sure all your photos are there. Whatever is in iCloud will at some point end up on your phone (usually once you’re connected to Wifi).

3. Turn off “Find My iPhone”

On your old phone, you want to disable the “Find My iPhone” feature before switching to the new phone.

Go to Settings > iCloud > Find My iPhone and set it to “Off”.

4. Check Your iCloud Settings

There are a few things you want to make sure you have turned on in iCloud so you don’t miss a beat when you fire up that new iPhone.

Go to Settings > iCloud

Make sure your Contacts, Calendars, Reminders and Notes are set to “On”. If you’re using a or email address, make sure your Mail is “On”.

5. What About My Music?

Music is a bit of a tricky thing. If you are using iTunes Match (currently $24.99/year) all your music (even stuff you’ve downloaded or burned) is stored in iCloud. If you’re not, you do want to make sure you connect your iPhone to your computer and do an iTunes sync before you give up your phone. The only thing you need to sync is your Music (not all your iCloud data). Then once you get your new phone, you just sync it again and your music will come back on.

Getting Your New iPhone

Now you have the new iPhone in your hands, you’re ready to go! Turn it on, sign in to your iCloud account, and tell it to restore from the latest iCloud backup. Make sure you’re connected to Wifi and just let the iCloud magic happen. Be patient as it’s usually a lot of data/info.

That’s all there is to it!


With over a decade of experience, I have managed online marketing for a wide range of industries including biotech, high-tech, financial, higher education, non-profit, manufacturing, hardware providers, and startups. My specialty is helping business make the right turn with their online efforts focusing on lead generation and analytics.

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